With more companies harnessing the endless possibilities of remote working, hiring global talents is on the rise. Whether you’re a coworker, a team lead or CEO, the ability to handle time zone conflict with remote workers may become an additional skill to add to the other skills necessary for remote working.
Since 2005, remote working has increased by about 140%, and with the COVID-19 pandemic, remote work may be on a growth spur. So, organisations are not new to time zone conflicts or how it can hinder excellent communication – a prerequisite to remote working.
So how do organisations handle time zone conflicts? Let’s find out. Here are five ways to manage time zone conflict with remote workers:
1. Keep a schedule:
No matter how flexible the company is, staff meetings are necessary for structure and effective communication. They also allow staff to feel included and part of a team. To be as inclusive as possible, have all staff submit their most convenient times, look for the time where almost everyone is available and fix it for the staff meeting. You can communicate the time to the rest of the team to find a way to join.
2. Collaboration tools:
Tools like Google Drive or Dropbox allow all team members to have access to important documents no matter the time zone. This reduces any hitches that the inaccessibility may cause to important documents, and it always keeps the team’s productivity up.
3. Be clear and specific with times and dates:
One way to handle time zone conflict with remote workers is to be specific with meeting times and deadlines. Saying ‘I need the document before 3 pm on Wednesday’ may be the normal thing to say; however, 3 pm CAT or WAT may be more helpful. This specificity reduces assumptions and the reduced productivity that may come from misunderstood dates. This misunderstanding is a common mishap that can mess with schedules, so it is worth noting when you work in global teams.
4. Virtual Team Bonding:
Like effective communication, team building is vital to help keep the company spirit alive. Although team building activities and meetups may be challenging for virtual teams, it’s not impossible. There are several apps that people can chat in, play games and have casual conversations, even if it’s not in real-time. This provision creates an online hangout area that’s always available.
5. Reduce the length of meetings:
There may be times when there’ll be a need for general meetings, and staff will need to show up, irrespective of the time zone difference. So, to save time and allow staff to look forward to joining your meetings, it’s best to make it as brief as possible. It’s also a way to encourage people who are willing to go the extra mile and be at all meetings no matter the time.
In conclusion, to reap the benefits of having a global team with remote workers, you have to fight every hurdle that prevents proper communication. Strive to continually find ways to create communication channels and build cohesiveness in the company. All the tips above will help you handle time zone conflict with remote workers and have a diverse but unified group of people tasked with growing a brand together.
Visit tamborin.io to see more resources on remote working.
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